Thursday, March 15, 2012

Gay marriage consultation launched

The government has today begun its Equal civil marriage consultation. The consultation sets out the government's proposals to enable same-sex couples to have a civil marriage.

The key proposals of the consultation are:
  • to enable same-sex couples to have a civil marriage i.e. only civil ceremonies in a register office or approved premises (like a hotel);
  • to make no changes to religious marriages (this will continue to only be legally possible between a man and a woman);
  • to retain civil partnerships for same-sex couples and allow couples already in a civil partnership to convert this into a marriage;
  • civil partnership registrations on religious premises will continue as is currently possible i.e. on a voluntary basis for faith groups and with no religious content; and
  • individuals will, for the first time, be able legally to change their gender without having to end their marriage.
You can find the consultation document here (see Annex B for a list of the consultation questions) and the impact assessment here.

Respondents can use this online form, or send their responses by post or email to the Government Equalities Office.

 The consultation closes on the 14th June.

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